(Note: These lies probably work against any person—especially parents or teachers. I learned them while caregiving so I know they apply there.)
If you would like to see the first two lies, click here.
Lie 3—I am to be pitied because the road I am on is rough.
TRUTH—Caring for my dad and mom was the most profound blessing of my life. Yes, the road was hard but I received daily (and nightly) lessons in how to love. God gave grace for every moment. I am forever changed from such intense loving. Whatever I would have gained had I been earning top dollar in a company or building my own family—I’ll never know. But what I gained from caregiving was a life transformed by love and a deep confidence in God’s wisdom.
Caregiving alone didn’t change me. God used His Word, the community I worshiped with, friends, a zillion audio books, Bible studies, and more. Often I was drawn to specific resources because I felt depleted and desperate. While using me to serve my parents He was refining me as well.
Lie 4—I should not take time for self-care. That would be selfish.
TRUTH—Self-care would have made me a more effective support for my parents.
I’ll never forget the night when I stumbled to the kitchen half asleep to get pain meds for mom. I got a glass of water, poured out the pills into my hand, and accidentally tossed them in MY mouth and swallowed them myself. I was just that tired.
Of course—as soon as I swallowed them I realized what I had done and came fully awake. When I called hospice, the nurse couldn’t stop laughing. She assured me that—even though the meds were excessively strong—they would not hurt me. What they would do is give me hours and hours and hours of much needed sleep.
Care giving is often a much longer, more intense road than we can imagine. Learning how to pull others in on the journey not only helps the caregiver to care more effectively, it also gives others the chance to share in the blessings that come from caring.
I am overcome with gratitude when I think of those who walked the caregiving road with me providing long phone calls, prayers, and weekly homemade custard when that was all mom could eat.
As I look back on caregiving I remember the lies Satan tried to use and the truth that set me free.
Please feel free to comment below or connect with me in a private message through my Esther Wilkison Facebook page. Let me know either what is working for you in the area of self-care or what you are struggling with in this area. I welcome your questions and your suggestions. Lots of other who teach, parent, and caregiver (or do all three) can benefit from what God is teaching us.